London Trip: Thoughts and Observations

     I recently came back from a vacation across the pond and while the weather was “on and off” that didn’t stop me from traveling or sightseeing. England is a really big place (well, depends on who you ask) so it is really impossible to see everything in such a short time (A week) which is why you research and choose what you feel is of importance to you on this go around.Which I did and I’m happy to say more or less that my goal was reached and accomplished (minus the 2 things recommended by a friend that I didn’t know about).

 So, based on everything I did, let me tell you about what I thought about the stuff I did.

HOUSES OF PARLIAMENT

   This is the heart of London where everything happens. Going through I tried to compare it with our version of the Senate and House (not sure if it’s an accurate description though) and here, it’s defined as the House of Lords and the House of Commons. You can tell that the building is steeped in History by it’s design. Not only that, but there’s one room where all the Queens and Kings hang (including the current )and I stopped and “visualised” what it was like back then. All the sculptures of people who are long, long gone that passed through even the door that Charles 1 walked through . There’s a reason why you need to knock now as apparently, Charles 1 stormed through this door demanding the head of 5 people he said commited treason (If you look closely, the door is still damaged and ironically, if you look above the door, the wall is damaged from the bombs of WWII. Churchill aid to leave as is as a reminder).

You actually enter from a place called WESTMINSTER HALL which was built in the 1500’s and is very significant because it’s also called THE GREAT HALL  because it’s where a few people lied in state here such as Churchill. Also, it’s where leaders come to speak (Mandela, Obama). Unfortunately, I wasn’t allowed to take pictures except for in this room.

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Stain Glass window

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Over the years, this has been renovated but it’s the original design

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WESTMINSTER ABBEY

  This is older then Parliament by about 500 years (give or take) and it’s a church, cathedral, cemetery, memorial.. Basically an all in one and I’m not exaggerating and here’s why.

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      Basically, how this works is that you go through it (It’s one big area) and as you go off with Jeremy Irons (He’s your guide) you really have to take a look at the gothic design and the detail that went in to it.It’s massive, beautiful and lots of thoughts went into it. You walk past the final resting places of ome of the early monarchy such as Isaac Newton, King Henry (the first one who also was one of the original designers), his wife, Edward (I forgot which one) Mary Queen of Scots and even some modern day people who are paried beneath the floor (You can’t see them but if you stand on their name plaque, it’s the spot where they are “resting”) even those not buried here (like Willie Shakespeare) still have a memorial to them including Handel who was German.

    I should also mention that on display is the coronation chair that was used for Queen Elizabeth and of past Q and K’s (It is still being used). Here is also where Princess Di and Charles , Willie and Katie got married.

  It’s also open to anyone who finds themselves wanting to pray during services. I do however recommend you going to check this out no matter your religion.

CRUISING DOWN THE THAMES

    This isn’t really anything I set out to do (it is Winter after all) but I just wanted to say that I went to the Thames. I also happened to have been here and it seemed like a good shortcut to get to where I was going.DSC_0086.JPG

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Tower of London View From Other Side Of Thames

TOWER OF LONDON

I didn’t know about this and was recommended by a friend but boy is this a chilly, eerie place. This place has 6 live Ravens living here for it is said that should they leave, the Tower will fall. No idea if it’s true but as Lenin once said

“Tell a lie long enough and it becomes truth”

Anyway, this was a massive Tower/Fortress  that was protected from all sides

 It also said that nearby is where Anne Boleyn was executed. There is a monument here to attest to that fact.

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A monument that says this is the site where Anne Boleyn was executed by Henry the 8th

Pretty much I learned a little bit here . One thing that is interesting here is that the staff live on the premises with family and that they are part of the royal guard that works for the Queen. The evidence is there because on the site also houses the Crown Jewels. Basically the royal crowns, scepters and everything among them.

    It truly is a magnificent place  and I can go on and on but I won’t so let’s go on shall we?

ROYAL ALBERT HALL

    This was actually not in my plans however I was close to where I needed to be so I figured it’s a really famous and well know place so I figured why not? Anyone who’s anyone has performed here (currently home to Cirque Du Soleil). Because I went on a guided tour, I was able to go where it’s usually off limits such as the Queen’s waiting room and her box (technically the Royal Box). Oh, and apparently there’s a royal bathroom which we couldn’t see but can’t imagine how it would be any different.

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The View From The Royals Box

I did a walking tour which was fascinating in and of itself and discovered that Big Ben is named after a guy named Ben who was a pretty big fella (true story). Also, for some reason, only UK residents can go inside it. Not sure why but this is an odd thing really. Oh, but the clock still works. It chimes on the hour.

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The Famous Pic/Movie Scene

Well, I spent a week here and pretty much accomplished what I set out to do and the other things were just bonuses. I even got to do 4 things in one day . The problem is that there’s lots to see not just in London so you’d have to plan another trip just to see it. For example:

  • Shakespeare’s House: This is way, way out there. It could be done but you’d have to go early in the morning. There are different  opinions on whether or not he’s buried here as well.
  • Windsor Castle: This is the main dish if you will. The place that holds the final resting place for KIng George VI(Lizzie’s Pop), his wife, daughter (I think)… Her name is Margret).. It’s also the place of many other royals . Interestingly enough, Princess Di isn’t buried here. She unfortunately is off limits to the public. The closest you can get to her is via her monument in Hyde Park.  Also of note: It’s still used today . Actually it’s one of the Queen’s residence . This is a nice place to visit if you have the time but it’s between 3 and 4 hours to get there so plan accordingly.
  • Stonehenge: This mysterious monument tells a story. There are conflicts regarding the Stonehenge. How it got there, who built it, what it represents… But it is considered by some as one of the seven wonders of the world. And, not far from here is the famous
  • Bath Houses. Not Turkish. Not English but Roman. Yep. And it is still in use today. In fact, for a fee, one can go swimming in these waters. Untouched, these are the actual houses which would make them thousands of years old (I’m guessing here).

Believe it or not, England is a HUGE place with so much to see and do. It is unfortunate that you can’t see EVERYTHING in one trip (Unless you stay here for a month or two) but a lot of this is for anyone who is a history buff and/or just to see famous “movie locations”. (You won’t find the GoT set anywhere here).

England is older then America. Way, way, way old. And yet, they were barbaric for most of their existence and I think most ,if not all, of England still suffers from that today. It is interesting to not however that the monarchy meant something all those years ago. Today, it is just a name in title only. A figurehead. Yet, the Queen still has a say in some Government matters and there’s still a hierarchy but only because it’s been that way from generation to generation (kinda tradition at this point) but England isn’t the same as it used to be? No. Can it or will it revert to it’s past?  No and even if it wanted to it couldn’t because of the Magna Carta (which I happily got to see ).

And that’s why the history is so important not just for England but for us all because at one point in time we were all under British rule.It wasn’t just America, (New York was named by the English by the way as it was supposed to be a gift for the Duke of York), but other countries like S. Africa, Israel, Canada (which is still under the Monarchy it seems). And it is important to remember why we wanted to be free of their rule and why we wanted our independance.

England today by definition is a Catholic country (I think) but it was because of the separation of Church and State which was a very important time in England’s history. It is this point that made it what it is today and without it, who knows what would have happened. That being said, I like to think that England’s history is our history because it is who we are. It is who we became for without them, who knows if we would have ever become The United States of America? And it is for this reason and this reason alone that we must reflect on the history and the politics of English rule and society .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why Donald Trump Is A Stupid, Stupid Man

Donald Trump is not a well man. I’ve never seen anyone as delusional as he is.. Think about it… Here’s a man who thinks he’s right and everyone else is wrong. A guy who thinks he’s God’s gift to humanity. A guy who is now our Commander in Chief. The question is is he fit for the job? Well, let’s find out shall we?

I said that Mr. Trump is a stupid man and I know people will call me out on this and that’s okay but in order to understand this, let’s post some opinions (of which are entirely my own).

Here’s a man who no matter what happens will go on Twitter and just tweet away. (For examples, click to go to them). Donald Trump’s Tweets

1)Think about this : During the transition period, he was busy focusing on how he didn’t like his portrayal on SNL and called on NBC to cancel the show or how Arnold Schwarzenegger was destroying the Apprentice and that NBC should fire him.. Really? This is what’s important to you?

2) During the campaign, Trump was convinced that the election was rigged against him (it wasn’t). A claim he still stands by even now after winning.. Who cares though? You already won so why should it matter? Just yesterday he claimed that he lost the popular vote due to many illegal votes and that his administration will look into it.. Forget the fact that you win by electoral votes and not by a “popularity contest”, but why are you still focused on this? Even Trump’s legal team says there’s no evidence to back this up but Trump says he “believes so”. Well, okay then. Intrestingly, one of his top aides, Steve Bannon is registered to vote in two states which itself is illegal so why isn’t Trunp concerned about that? Steve Bannon Commits Voter Fraud Trump Claims Voter Fraud

3) He repealed Obamacare despite not having something to replace it which isnt the best idea.. I mean if your going to replace something, make sure you have a back up or millions of people will be without insurance which, down the line will become problematic..

4) He wants to build a wall. Okay, I get it. He thinks a wall will keep the “bad people” out however history shows us that did doesn’t work. If people want to get into the country they will find a way to do so. Look at Hamas: They found a way around it by building a network of tunnels to get into Israel. In Germany they climbed over the walls. In Russia, we had the cold war (It wasn’t until Regean where he uttered those famous words. Point being, if the walls in those countries couldn’t keep people out what makes Trump’s wall different? And another thing, what about family? What if I live here and have family in Mexico? Does this mean I can no longer go? Need special permission? Join them but never allowed back? Sure, anyone can build a wall and if we do that I fear this will set us back 50/60 years or worse. Trump’s Wall        Trump’s Executive Order

But here area few things to ask yourself:

  • Are you unaware of the 1970 treaty that requires that  needs the permission and approval of Mexico
  • Are you willing to put people out of work
  • Are you aware of the ecomincal reprussicans that will come if you buildthis wall? For instance: The states that border Mexico and the people who rely on them for their livleyhood?
  • What about the Rio Grande? Have you stopped to think how this would be affected?
  • Mexico refuses (and rightly so) topay for the wall yet Mr. Trump insists that “they will pay for it one way or the other.” Well, if I didn’t know any better that sounds like a threat and/or a demand.
  • Furthermore, you are asking taxpayers to pay for this. To that I say that if you want a damn wall, fund it yourself and leave us out of it.
  • Finally, let’s forget that there already is wall up (there is) wallbut the one that Trump wants built has been proven to be ecomically imposible. Not to mention years of manpower that we do not have and assume for a moment it is built, who monitors it? Who funds it? By the way, some of Trump’s clothing line is Made in Mexico..
  • Last but not least, Donald Trump said that after talking with the President of Mexico, he agreed that it’s in everyone’s best interest if the White House canceled the upcoming meeting. Only one problem. NEVER HAPPANED. The Mexican President tweeted that it was his decision because Trump has no respect for him or his country.

5) Now, the other thing that Trump vowed to do and did was sign an executive order to ban immigration. Trump’s Order On Immigration Sure ok it’s easier said then done. I have a few issues with this as does many American citizens . In NY alone, Mayor De Blasio held a press confrence AGAINST this as did many other Mayors. What was Trump’s response?   Immigrant Order

Cut off funding to those states that do so. But:

  • You can’t do that. Nope it’s law that you can’t withold money from a state unless the money will be used for something other then what it is intended for.
  • Also, holding states hostage will prove what exactly?
  • There are millions of immigrants living across the U.S. many are legal and many have family. So question is: Will you deport legal citizens regardless of wheather or not they did anything wrong?
  • Do we have the resources? Time? Money?

I find this interesting that people have come to this country to make a better life for themselves and family and one man wants to take that all away. Well,Mr Trump (No, I will not call him the P word) not every Muslim, Arab aren’t “evil”.

Will the protests work? I don’ know. But we need to so we can be heard and maybe just maybe make a difference.

 

The Rogue One (Star Wars) Trailer

HERE IT IS. What we’ve all been waiting for. The newly released trailer that debuted during the Olympics. While we only got to see the back of his head, I have no doubt that Vader will be featured fully in the 2nd trailer that will be released closer to December. And yes, James Earl Jones “returns” to voice the guy.

So what do you think? Thoughts?

Rogue One Trailer (A Star Wars Story)

Star Wars

 

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My Suicide Squad Review

 When the first trailer for this was released the anticipation for this movie was at an high. Even more when Jared Leto was cast as Mr. J. It’s one of the lesser known comics (heck, i never even heard of it) but the premise was a good one. Take a bunch of bad guys do do your dirty work with the chance that you will die. What can go wrong with that? Well, everything as it turns out. 

After the disaster that was BATMAN V SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE, the brass at WB didn’t take any chances with SS. SUICIDE SQUAD was designed to be a dark film with a R rating (something David Ayers is known for) however, WB brass was so nervous after  BVS failure that they took no chances and sadly this shows throughout.

This whole movie is a mess from start to finish. The “origin” stories are rushed as is Batman .(Yes, it’s Ben Affleck and yes it’s a Cameo). It’s as if the writer couldn’t even bother for the people who are unfamiliar. There was more to the Harley Quinn origin that ended up on cutting room floor.  Speaking of cameos, there’s a blink and you miss it one of FLASH (which for some reason is making an appearance and again, has nothing to do with the story).

 Now, everyone was making a big deal about Leto’s Joker and how he would portray him. I have a question? Why is Joker even in this movie? What purpose does he serve? He gets 20 minutes of screen time if that. It was a waste of a character that had nothing to do with the story. Seriously, the majority of his scenes are with Harley and we don’t know what his motivation is. 

Speaking of which, every one of these characters are under developed. Who’s Rick Flagg? Why was he assigned the Squad? What’s his backstory? Why should I care about him? Who is the Squad? Seriously, every single one of these characters are not very well developed. We know nothing about them and frankly, I didn’t care if they lived or died. Heck, even Will Smith was stiff here.

  The script (or lack thereof) made no sense. The story was just all over the place. Even the villain (If you can call it that) was a mess not to mention cliched.This is the same type of villain we’ve seen in the past. You know the “humanity must be enslaved or destroyed because of what they’ve done.” But what exactly have they done to ENCHANTRESS? We are never told.. She(along with her brother) just wants revenge for something that happened thousands of years ago. 

I really wanted to like this movie and I tried but there’s just way to many plot holes. This is a good example of “two many hands in the kitchen” where you take the director/writer’s vision and want changes because you are scared and that may have led to this mess. WB brass wanted reshoots to supposedly “inject more humor” (May or may not be true. No one’s saying) but man oh man this is one big mess. Story wise, it makes no sense. The villain (If you can call her that) is such a waste as is Katana (Who for some reason never bothered to learn English and again, a character who isn’t developed). 

 You know this movie is bad when as you are leaving you over hear this conversation: “This makes me NOT want to see JUSTICE LEAGUE.”  ” Yes, well I can say the same for WONDER WOMAN.” And  if this is how Justice League will turn out then WB has a serious problem. Someone from Marvel should give a class to them on how to make comic book movies because when you have two highly anticipated movies that bomb, there’s a serious problem.

In a way, I feel bad for David Ayer because what he wanted to make most likely got vetoed and this is what happens when executives care more about the money then making the fanboys happy. It’s also what caused both parties to fight and create bad blood between the two.

Watching Suicide Squad made me wanna join the squad just so I could commit suicide to escape this wretched mess. A mess I give a 3 out of 10.

 

 

 

The Orlando Massacre

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I would like to get something off my chest so please excuse my rant: Over the weekend, a horrendous thing happened. 50 people were shot to death and another 53 wounded all because some lunatic was angry that 2 men kissed . In Orlando, he walked into the Gay club and just shot, shot, shot until he couldn’t shoot no more. The question we have to ask ourselves is several: 1) How was he able to just walk on in w/o a security check? 2) How it it no one tried tackling him to the ground? 3) If Floridians were allowed to conceal none of this would have happened or at least not that many? Just to ponder something about how screwed up our Government is: We have a Terrorist list, A No Fly List and yet, the people that are on these lists are able to buy guns legally . Why? Isn’t this a double edge sword? If you are on these lists there’s a reason for it.. Granted the second Amendment allows us to legally own guns but only if one is “sane” and yet, our Government continues to look the other way. How much more of these tragedies to we need to endure before some one says enough is enough. Which brings me to Donald J. Trump who warned us that this would happen and no one would listen to him., Sadly, he is correct and it will only get worse if we keep sitting on the sidelines doing nothing and still our wonderful President cant stand up to say what it really is which is Radical Islamic Terror (ISIS claimed responsibility.) How many more school shootings, bombs overseas, hostages being taken, random acts of violence must there be before we wake up and finally do something about it? Our country is thisclose to becoming under Martial Law and if that happens, it will be to late and I pray that this does not happen. I also pray for the victims who’s only crime was that they were out having a good time. At least now, they are at peace forever in time and be who they are. R.I.P. . The world mourns for you. ‪#‎OrlandoMassacare‬‪#‎OrlandoShooting‬